Mar 31, 2013

Sunday March 31, 2013 Andrew J. Ries

Theme: "Support Group" -  12 AA meets in the middle of each theme entry.

23A. Tibetan breed : LHASA APSO. In Tibetan, Apso means "bearded".


24A. Cinematographer's concern : CAMERA ANGLE

30A. First Bond girl : URSULA ANDRESS. Looking for shells?


45A. Orange County seat : SANTA ANA

47A. Max Ernst, for one : DADA ARTIST

55A. Crimson Tide's home : TUSCALOOSA ALABAMA. Marti's husband's alma mater.
 
80A. "The Voice" coach : CHRISTINA AGUILERA. She is taking a break now. Shakira is in.

 

87A. Interactive website plug-in : JAVA APPLET

91A. Unusual thing : RARA AVIS

106A. Its largest hub is in Atlanta : DELTA AIRLINES

113A. First Japanese car to be produced in the U.S. : HONDA ACCORD

116A. Mozart highlight : OPERA ARIA. Is there any non-opera ARIA?

Reveal entry:
69A. Event where the number 12 is important, and a feature of 12 two-word answers in this puzzle : AA MEETING. Their 12-step progress.

I counted 145 theme squares. This is crazily brilliant. Normally we have around 100. Unlike the scrabbly KK's, AA's are easier to deal with, but it takes skill to make the grid so smooth.

Today's constructor Andrew Ries is from Minnesota. I glanced at his website before but never went to "About me". After looking at his picture this morning, I realized he's the host of the Minnesota Crossword Tournament. So I met you, Andrew!

Across:

1. Festive occasion : GALA

5. Stinging remark : BARB

9. Italian for "small rolls" : PANINI. I had an eggplant panini once. Pretty good. Hard to make eggplant tasty.

15. Epps of "House" : OMAR

19. One working on figures? : ICE SKATER. Not Weight watchers.

21. Knocked the socks off : AMAZED

22. Goody-goody's "headwear" : HALO

26. Patriotic org. : DAR. Daughters of the American Revolution.

27. Starts the haggling at : ASKS. Is the "at" needed in the end?

29. Powerful perch : THRONE

36. Let the tears go : SOB. Sad. "Nothing Compares 2 U"!

37. In the past : AGO

39. Rocker Young : NEIL

40. Real estate listing abbr. : RMs

41. Palm tree nut : ARECA. Did you want BETEL as well?

43. Cuban of the Dallas Mavericks, e.g. : OWNER. Mark Cuban.

50. Bases-loaded walk stat : RBI

51. Well-stated : APT

54. Literally, "the tar" : LA BREA

61. Mao's successor : HUA. Gimme! Hua Guofeng. He ended Cultural Revolution in 1976. But ousted by Deng Xiaoping in 1978. I remember this poster vividly. The guy in the middle is Hua. Extremely loyal to Mao.



64. Jobs offering of 2007 : iPHONE

65. Former Bears coach : DITKA (Mike)

66. Full or half holds : NELSONs

68. Train-stopping spots: Abbr. : STAs

72. Once, archaically : ERST

73. Texas Hold 'em variety : NO LIMIT

76. Believing in the green-cheese moon, say : NAIVE

77. Smoothing tool : PLANER. Splynter probably uses it everyday.

79. Leveling initials : TNT

84. Rub with oil : ANOINT
 
85. Evelyn Waugh, but not George Eliot : MAN. George Eliot's real name is Mary Anne Evans.

86. Pujols blasts: Abbr. : HRS. Pujols is Boomer's favorite player.

96. Scare : ALARM

97. Reacted to a massage : AAHED

100. __-de-France : ILE

101. Wolfe who tracks crooks : NERO

102. "Licensed to __": Beastie Boys album : ILL. Doesn't make sense grammatically.

103. Sea-Tac posting : ARR

109. Turtledove : DEARIE

111. Hair disheveler : GUST. Oh, you need So Sexy serum. It smells amazing. 

112. Ambulance VIP : EMT

122. Ancient Andean : INCA

123. Just as prescribed : TO A TEE. We often see TO A T.

124. Save a date, say : MAKE PLANS

125. Consider : DEEM

126. Bugs : ANNOYS

127. Flower stalk : STEM

128. Wrist-directed reprimand : SLAP

Down:

1. "The Simpsons" real estate agent Gunderson : GIL. No idea. The only Gunderson I know is Jerome.

2. Hamburger beef? : ACH. Ha ha. Ham & pineapple for us today.

3. Shows the way (to) : LEADS IN. Is "to" necessary here?

4. Military attack : ASSAULT

5. Ovine bleat : BAA. MAA too.

6. Men's tennis org. : ATP. Association of Tennis Professionals. And 44D. 6-Down counterpart founded by Billie Jean King : WTA. Women's Tennis Association.

7. Thing in court : RES

8. Like some shoulders : BROAD

9. Lambeau Field pro : PACKER. Quite a few Packers' flags/signs in our neighborhood.

10. Saved up : AMASSED

11. Site of '60s action : NAM

12. Modern ending? : IZE. Modernize.  

13. "Darn it!" : NERTS.  In Chinese, it's "Ta Ma De", pronounced just like it's written. Urban dictionary has it wrong. It's not the F word. Just "Dammit!"

14. State with a panhandle : IDAHO. Which state do you think is the most popular in Xword?

15. [Gasp!] : OH NO

16. Oscar winner Anna : MAGNANI. Alien to me. Wiki says she won Oscar for "her portrayal of a Sicilian widow in The Rose Tattoo".


17. Asserts sans proof : ALLEGES

18. Fish eggs : ROE

20. Bush advisor Rove : KARL. Big fund raiser.

25. Like koalas : ARBOREAL

28. Mexican Mrs. : SRA

30. Young __ : UNS

31. "Bloom" star Stephen : REA. I've only seen his "The Crying Game" & "Michael Collin" & "Prêt-à-Porter".

32. Ideal for growing : ARABLE

33. OB/GYN test : AMNIO

34. Org. in the film "Sneakers" : NSA

35. Italy's La __ : SCALA

38. Morsel : ORT

42. Very little : A DAB

46. Ireland's __ Islands : ARAN. Stumped me last time.

48. Go out with __ : A BANG

49. Soldat's weapon : ARME. Soldat = Solider. French.

51. "__ sure you're aware …" : AS I'M

52. One of Edison's 1,000-plus : PATENT

53. Put in the crosshairs : TAKE AIM
 
55. Quaint "Not so" : 'TISN'T

56. B.J. or Justin of baseball : UPTON. They're brothers.


57. Commandment verb : SHALT

58. Mozart's "__ fan tutte" : COSI

59. Seraglio room : ODA

60. J.Lo, for one : LATINA

61. Mezzo Marilyn : HORNE

62. Racing great Bobby : UNSER. Brother of Al.

63. Stars at the Forum? : ASTRA. Latin.

67. Official emblem : SEAL

69. Aweigh : ATRIP. And APEAK. Real words in Spitzboov's world. Let's see if we can have a week sans A* words next week.

70. US Open champ between John and Mats : IVAN (Lendl). OK, John McEnroe. Mats Wilander is a stranger to me.

71. Grant-providing gp. : NEA

74. '60s defense secretary : McNAMARA (Robert). No escape from Vietnam.

75. Chain with stacks : IHOP. What's your favorite food at IHOP?

77. Coddled kitty, e.g. : PURRER

78. Crossword-solving Simpson : LISA. This is the episode with Merl Reagle & Will Shortz. Maybe someone can dig out the YouTube clip.

81. At a Lakers home game, e.g. : IN LA. Hi there, Bill, have you ever been to a Lakers' game?

82. Place : STEAD

83. '90s U.N. secretary-general Boutros-__ : GHALI. Boutros Boutros-Ghali. I just found out that Boutros is Arabic for "Peter". 

84. River past Berne : AAR
 
87. Start of a rhyming Basque game : JAI. Jai alai.

88. Finished : ALL DONE!

89. Element's combining power : VALENCE

90. 2011 Liam Neeson film involving a wolf pack : THE GREY. Never saw the movie. Gray wolves.

91. Fjord-like inlet : RIA

92. Pink Floyd album including "Dogs" and "Sheep" : ANIMALS. Very helpful clue.

93. Abdominal : VENTRAL. Also a new word to me.

94. Mad-as-all-get-out state : IRE

95. Tapped-out letters : SOS. D'oh!

98. Gets away from : ELUDES

99. Boozer's affliction : DTS. Delirium tremens. The shakes.

104. Stampede rope : RIATA

105. Casing outing, briefly : RECON. Reconnaissance.

107. Physics bits : ATOMS

108. Spring : LEAP

110. Pop singer Lambert : ADAM. Runner-up of "American Idol" 8th season. Noted for his use of eyeliner.


 
113. Kept under wraps : HID

114. Crushable container : CAN

115. Native Nebraskan : OTO

117. Search, with "down" : PAT

118. Scratch (out) : EKE

119. Sleep lab acronym : REM. Rapid Eye Movement.

120. TV chef Garten : INA. Love her "Barefoot Contessa".


Guess who this lady is? Don't raise your hand, D-Otto!
 

121. Cause of Cleo's demise : ASP


C.C.


Mar 30, 2013

Saturday, Mar 30th, 2013, Barry C. Silk

Theme: Saturday Silkie

Words: 68 (missing F,J,Z)

Blocks: 28

  This one was a fun romp for yours truly today, as I was done well within my personal allotted time.  With the exception of one,  I found the answers dwelling deep inside my crossword cranium.  Triple 9- and 10-letter triple stacks in a pinwheel grid, with some notables:

31. Ambergris source : SPERM WHALE - ambergris is essentially "poop"; a substance found in the digestive system- the Wiki

42. Relatives of penny dreadfuls : DIME NOVELS - I got the "DIME" part, and novels seemed to make sense; some interesting reading; made me think of "pulp fiction" - but I'll refrain from a movie clip

57. Instigator of '70s-'80s wars : BURGER KING - I half expected this to be so variation of Coca-Cola or Pepsi; once the perps filled in, I recalled the 'other' war of the same time period - that between the answer and McDonald's.  I am a BK fan myself; they have sweet potato fries now~!

Onward~!

ACROSS:

1. Its goal is to include "all words in all languages" : WIKTIONARY - I don't usually visit this part of Wikipedia

11. Walker of the 1960s 76ers : CHET - all from the perps; not a basketball fan

15. Approaching the hour : A QUARTER TO - First line of a Blue Öyster Cult song (a quarter to 'five')

16. Bar mitzvah staple : HORA - feeling better, Lemon?

17. Retreats : RUNS SCARED

18. Without restraint : AMOK - not FREE

19. The Panthers of the Big East : PITT - from Pittsburgh

20. Bond first bought by FDR in 1941 : SERIES E - hey, I found a clip of the president pitching the idea~!

22. Heavenly approach? : STAIRWAY - No Stairway, denied~! (to Heaven, a la Led Zeppelin)

27. Open living rooms : LANAIs - why do I think this is called a "patio"?

28. Schools overseas : ECOLES - Frawnch for "school"

30. Spartan toiler : HELOT - I dug this one out from deep within my skull

35. Wiped out, with "in" : DONE

36. Texting nicety : THX - 'Thanks', and I am guilty of using it

37. Birds with colorful mates : PEAHENS - it's the male peaCOCKs (easy there) that have the plumage


39. Little break : NAP

40. Tim of "WKRP in Cincinnati" : REID

44. Dramatist Chekhov : ANTON - crossword staple, so I got it

46. Caved : GAVE IN

47. Ancient Mexican : TOLTEC - because AZTECS is more than one Mexican

49. Fertile Crescent area : NEAR EAST

53. Musical name that means "Love God" : AMADEUS - huh, well, that makes sense AMA, DEUS

55. Mid-second-century date : CLII - Roman 152; the second century was 101-200

56. Actress Rowlands : GENA - another crossword staple

62. Hydrocarbon endings : ENEs - propene, octene, etc.

63. Sign of a bad waiter : IMPATIENCE - went to a Japanese Hibachi restaurant last night - I dig the "stunt cooking" - the chef pitched broccoli florets to us to catch in our mouths

64. British side : MASH - bangers (hey now) and mash - sausage and potatoes

65. Take over : COMMANDEER

DOWN:

1. They may be found in board examinations : WARPS - HA~!!! I put in KNOTS first - carpenter's clue


2. Resigning words : I QUIT - felt like walking out at UPS today - not enough vans running for a holiday weekend

3. Kinte in "Roots" : KUNTA

4. More palatable : TASTIER

5. E-file org. : IRS

6. Nasdaq predecessor : OTC - just like the "Monday" cluing, this is Over-The-Counter finance

7. PBS benefactor : NEA

8. LAX datum : ARRival

9. They usually involve turns: Abbr. : RTEs

10. Singing cowboy's refrain : YODEL

11. Bound, in a way : CHAINED

12. Film in which Marv says, "He's only a kid, Harry. We can take him." : HOME ALONE

13. Caused by weathering : EROSIONAL

14. Act : TAKE STEPS

21. Fan sound : RAH

23. Ottawa-based enforcement gp. : RCMP - Royal Canadian Mounted Police - another Blue Öyster Cult song, also in the first line

24. Amazed : WOWED

25. Ron Reagan's first secretary of state : AL HAIG - full name, nice

26. Cat's assent : "YEAH MAN~!"

29. Record holder : SLEEVE

31. Gambit : STRATAGEM

32. Events : PHENOMENA

33. Turnoffs : EXIT LANES - good misdirection; not 'bad breath', e.g.

34. Octa- plus one : ENNEA - I study the Personality Types of the Enneagram; I know Yellowrocks does, too - I am a Five with a Four-wing

38. Liszt's "Harmonies du __" : SOIR - this was the one that was totally out of my wheelhouse

41. A, to Morse : DOT DASH


43. Unlike crews : V-NECKED - The VN--- was there, and I thought "no....oh wait~!" - we're talking T-shirts here

45. Formerly : NEE

48. __ yard : CUBIC

50. Dress with a flare : A-LINE

51. Subsequently : SINCE

52. Clemson player : TIGER

54. Sport for heavyweights : SUMO

58. Dash letters : RPM

59. Pinup highlight : GAM - can't get out without linking some GAMS, you know me~!


60. Frat vowel : ETA

61. Film dog's first name? : RIN - tin-tin, that is; not ASTA

Splynter